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15-410 Book Report Guidelines


This assignment is due Friday, May 2nd at 23:59:59. Please note that any conflict between any late days you might wish to take and the university's final exam policy is your responsibility, i.e., you may wish to plan ahead and complete this assignment on time.

Please submit your report in either PostScript or PDF format (not: Microsoft Word, Word Perfect, Apple Works, LaTeX, XyWriter, WordStar, etc.). Submit your work by placing it in the appropriate place, i.e., /afs/cs.cmu.edu/academic/class/15410-s14/usr/$USER/report/$USER.pdf (if you use a randomly-selected other filename, such as my-book-report-for-15-410.pdf the mass-printing script will miss it and your grade may be delayed as a result).

Please be sure your name and Andrew username appear on the first page of the report. Also, clearly indicate what you read. You wouldn't believe how many people manage to omit some of this information. This is an easy way to lose points.


Approved books

See the list of pre-approved books and then tell us your choice (or make a suggestion) on the book choice registration page.

Book Report Contents

You should expect to write one to two solid pages of text, though you may write more if you genuinely wish (each semester we get a few four-page reports, but two good pages is really enough). While presentation clarity will probably be an important part of your career skill set, I will not be grading this the way an English teacher would. On the other hand, since I was raised by an English teacher, please pay some attention to style so I don't need to suffer unnecessarily.

Please be sure to address, in one to three paragraphs apiece, each of the following topics.

Question 1: Educational value of material

What was the most surprising, interesting, or eye-opening material you found in what you read? If you want, you can fall back to summarizing everything you read, but I'd rather you focused on what was the most valuable to you.

Question 2: Recommendation

Would you recommend this material to your friends or co-workers? To which ones? Why? In the course of reading this, did you find out about some other material you would recommend? What, and why?

Question 3: Value of this assignment

This assignment is probably somewhat unusual for CS courses. Do you think it was worth your time? Please feel free to recommend improvements in the format of the assignment.


[Last modified Sunday January 26, 2014]